Jake DiMare wonders: When does being ‘close friends’ cross the line?
I’ve got a confession to make…I love the television show The Office. I’ve seen every episode a hundred times and I own every season on DVD. Last night’s new episode had a really funny sub-plot exploring an often overlooked aspect of male-female relationships on the Good Men Project: ‘Good Friends’. I am a guy who is getting married to the woman of my dreams…But I also have a good (female) friend.
In the episode, a large group of the cast is on a business trip and staying in a hotel. This includes Jim, the dutiful young husband and father (who would never cheat on his wife) and Cathy, the attractive young temp who was originally hired to cover for Jim’s wife when she went on maternity leave. If you don’t watch the show, Jim is a charming character…The kind of guy who immediately puts women at ease with his smile and non-threatening sense of humor.
At some point in the evening Jim has settled in to watch basketball in his hotel room and Cathy arrives, in shorts and a tank top. Her room is allegedly having ‘maintenance troubles’ and she wondered if she could hang with Jim. He obliges so she promptly crosses the room, jumps right into his bed and puts on her best flirty act. As the episode unfolds Cathy keeps upping the ante…She takes a shower, bares more skin…Until finally Jim gets so uncomfortable he leverages Dwight to get rid of her.
At one point Cathy reacts with utter dismay when Jim reveals he is uncomfortable with the situation. She accuses him of reading the situation incorrectly. After all, they are just ‘close friends’! However, when he apologizes and admits he might be jumping to conclusions, she takes it even further by cuddling up to him with nothing on but a bathrobe. It was here I started to wonder: ‘When is ‘close friends’ too close?” I mean, for me, it is way before being alone in a hotel room cuddling…But what are the boundaries for most people?
I’d really like to know what you think…